The Heathen Visibility Project — Gangleri’s Grove

Over the last two + years, Heathens have been growing more and more appalled at the (mis)-use of our sacred symbols by neo-Nazi groups. It’s disgusting, obscene, and outright blasphemous. We all speak out when we can, but we are a group of minority religions and most people outside of our religious communities aren’t going […]

via The Heathen Visibility Project — Gangleri’s Grove

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🕯️Christchurch, New Zealand🕯️

I intend to write more, but for now this will suffice:

 

Anyone who feels the need to take guns and shoot up people, including children, out of hate (especially in a place of worship) are an excremental excuse for a human being.

🐍🐉🐍 The Snakes in the Grass – Saint Patrick, the Pagans, & the God Crom Cruach 🐍🐉🐍

I do not celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day, which is a day of holy obligation for Catholics in Ireland (as well as revered by a few other Christian denominations). Why would I, a heathen, celebrate a 5th Century Saint whose mission in life was to turn pagans from their Gods and ancestral ways? If he lived today he’d be trying to convert me away from the Gods of my life as well.

For those with Irish ancestry who take this day to celebrate their ancestry, that is all to the good. But remember there is a difference between a drunken revelry of green beer, and the celebration of a vast rich culture. There is a difference in remembering your ancestors and laying out offerings, telling their stories, and hailing their names versus urinating on the sidewalk because you’re behaving as a drunken fool.

Of course, I’ve always found it ironic that a man who was born in Roman Britain, has become the representative icon for Ireland.

While there are many stories about Saint Patrick, the tale of him driving out the snakes is the most wide known. Of course it’s also clearly historically impossible as snakes haven’t inhabited Ireland since the last Ice Age concluded more than 10,000 years ago, which is before Patrick was even born. It’s a bit ridiculous to think he drove out animals that weren’t even there. But not only did this story appear very late (centuries after his death), there’s also a belief in some corners that the story was allegorical, and the snakes were symbolical representations for the ancient pagans/polytheists.

Continue reading “🐍🐉🐍 The Snakes in the Grass – Saint Patrick, the Pagans, & the God Crom Cruach 🐍🐉🐍”

Be Specific. Use Their Names.

One of my biggest pet peeves, in the interfaith community and some parts of the pagan community, is this tendency to use vague terms in prayers and offerings: Oh Spirit, Great Lady, Oh Goddess… 🤦‍♂️

Which one?

Be specific. Not only could you inadvertently be giving offerings and prayers to some entity you didn’t intend by being so vague, but it’s simply put an insult. Or did you want your prayer for a good wedding and happy, fruitful marital life to be answered by Sekhmet in bloodlust? Albeit that might explain Game of Thrones’ infamous red wedding… (yes I know the plot reason for that fictional scene, I’m making a point).

Continue reading “Be Specific. Use Their Names.”

Are there ritual quarters in the Northern Tradition?

One of the questions I have been asked alot in my more than 20 years as a Heathen is if our Northern Tradition also uses ritual quarters.

To answer this question, I’m going to back out a bit to the bigger picture to hopefully explain the connection from what we know of the ancient past, to certain aspects of the evolution of the modern religion and how it is practiced today. When someone goes searching through the vast amounts of ‘lore’ (sagas, skaldic and eddic poetry), as well as accounts written by outside travelers (like the Romans, or various Muslim travelers) to try to reconstruct religious practices, while there are indeed many references to such practices, unfortunately they tend to be rather brief and essentially consist of “they held a ritual”, which in the scheme of things isn’t terribly helpful for those of us today who would like to know exactly how such rituals may have been performed.


Continue reading “Are there ritual quarters in the Northern Tradition?”

The Snakes in the Grass – Saint Patrick, the Pagans, & the God Crom Cruach

image

I do not celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day, which is a day of holy obligation for Catholics in Ireland (as well as revered by a few other Christian denominations). Why would I, a heathen, celebrate a 5th Century Saint whose mission in life was to turn pagans from their Gods and ancestral ways? If he lived today he’d be trying to convert me away from the Gods of my life as well.

For those with Irish ancestry who take this day to celebrate their ancestry, that is all to the good. But remember there is a difference between a drunken revelry of green beer, and the celebration of a vast rich culture. There is a difference in remembering your ancestors and laying out offerings, telling their stories, and hailing their names versus urinating on the sidewalk because you’re behaving as a drunken fool.

While there are many stories about Saint Patrick, the tale of him driving out the snakes is the most wide known. Of course it’s also clearly historically impossible as snakes haven’t inhabited Ireland since the last Ice Age. Since the last one concluded more than 10,000 years before Patrick was even born it’s a bit ridiculous to think he drove out animals that weren’t even there. But not only did this story appear very late (centuries after his death), there’s also a belief in some corners that the story was allegorical, and the snakes were symbolical representations for the ancient pagans.

Continue reading “The Snakes in the Grass – Saint Patrick, the Pagans, & the God Crom Cruach”

Walking the Worlds – Issue #3 Update

Issue number 3 of Walking The Worlds is right around the corner, and I’m proud to have an article included which will have some interesting insights on Old One-Eyed Himself: Odin. I’m honored to have been selected, and among such good company.

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Want to learn more, check out Galina Krasskova ‘ s post Walking the Worlds Journal Update here:  http://wp.me/p59Y9v-wQ

Christ is NOT the reason for the season

Once upon a time I was Christian, specifically I was a devout Born Again Baptist. Yes, I have read the Bible from cover-to-cover six different times. I can still sing a number of hymns from memory, as well as modern Christian songs, and I can quote Bible verses and Church history at you better than some ministers I’ve met through the years (though certainly not all). Long before I ever even conceived of converting, when people would say “Christ is the reason for the season” it irked me, because even then and as a Christian I knew that it simply wasn’t true.

solstice

 

Continue reading “Christ is NOT the reason for the season”

And so it begins…

Through the years I’ve been one voice among so many others talking about the Gods and Goddesses of the Northern Tradition. My voice has been heard across forums, mailing lists, Livejournal, and Facebook. My words have been seen as a columnist at the interfaith website Patheos, as a contributor to Witches and Pagan Magazine and as a contributor to various polytheistic devotionals. I have been a presence at various kindreds and their rituals, attended numerous gatherings as both one among many there to worship with the community, and sometimes there in the role of gythia (priestess). I have spun songs, and sung invocations to our Gods. I have spoken of ways to connect to one’s ancestors.

But as invariably happens, life pulls you in different directions and so I retreated from public for the most part overwhelmed by a job that kept me ridiculously busy and a number of serious concerns impacting my family. Yet in private I never abandoned my Gods, or my ancestors. My practice continued.

And now circumstances have transpired enabling me to return once again to share my voice, my musings and thoughts, to be publicly part of the conversation once more.

And so it begins.

P.S. So this is my first venture here on Word Press, I imagine I'll be tweaking the design and layout for a while until I precisely get the look and feel I want. Please be patient with me in the meantime.